How we enriched our audience with 100,000 Github profiles

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Written by Houston Golden
May 20, 2017
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Do you know how we enriched our audience with 100,000 Github profiles?

Josh wants us to share our best growth hacks - so here goes:
If you’re trying to target technical audiences, Github can be a great place to start - mostly thanks to their relatively open APIs. We used this technique to target DevOps professionals (those using Amazon Web Services) but you could just as easily use this to target technical marketers, data scientists, researchers in certain fields or anything relevant to your niche.

Don’t be scared of running a script - you DO NOT need to be technical to do this, but you could always outsource to a VA if you’re nervous.

- First install Python on a machine - I use an AWS EC2 instance, but you can do it on your laptop.
- Download minimaxir’s code for grabbing stargazers…/get-profile-data-of-repo-stargazers - this will give you a script to run in python that will grab every user has “starred” (liked) a piece of code.
- Use the search function in github to find code repositories for your chosen subject. Here I have used football - - this will give me a list of repos that will eventually output the email addresses of people who are interested in playing with football data (it seems to be mostly fantasy football fans).
- The script, as is, will pull down csvs of usernames and other metrics for users, but with a couple of adjustments, can be amended to include email address. It’s not hard to figure out, but I can provide an amended version if people like.
Input the name of the code that you want to track users for, by following the readme, and you’re good to go!

We ended up with a bunch of CSVs with ~100,000 email addresses. Use your imagination but here are some things I recommend to do, perhaps with the help of a VA:

Firstly strip “+github” out of the CSV using a “search and replace” - these are just users who are tracking the email source. Then replace [email protected] with [email protected] (same reason).
If you’re choosing to cold email these people using Autopilot or similar, you should set up a rapport with your brand first by doing the following:
We created a bunch of gmail accounts and added the addresses to address books at (you’ll want to click “go to the old version” to mass import). Note that you can only import 2k-3k addresses at a time or it will fail. Also, each gmail account can only hold 30k addresses.
Once this is done, we added those address books to a bunch of linkedin profiles and started connecting to these people. We then use linkedin to share content and stories with them.
We also added the address books to twitter for the same effect. Once we started following these users many started following back. For those that didn’t, we exported their twitter handles and targeted them using Mass Planner campaigns.
For all the users we encouraged to follow us via twitter - we then synced each of our own twitter accounts, one at a time, with our main medium account - this automatically syncs those twitter followers to follow us on medium.

Additionally we uploaded the email addresses to Google Display Network for retargeting.

We also uploaded the email addresses to facebook for retargeting. If you’re lucky enough that facebook has activated adding of addresses books to invite to like a page, you can use the csv here too.
Plenty of ideas and opportunities from one simple piece of code - good luck!

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Houston Golden

Growth Marketer |
Forbes Top 12 Innovative Founders |

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